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Builders delay new station's opening

A NEW railway station in north Dublin is being delayed indefinitely because two property companies have not built an agreed access road.

The Dunboyne rail line is due to open on September 2 but Hansfield station will not be ready because Menolly Homes and Manor Park Homes have not constructed an access road.

Hansfield station was constructed to serve the people of Ongar and Littlepace but will remain closed and unused until the road is complete.

Hansfield is a developer-led station, providing infrastructure for the Hansfield strategic development zone and the surrounding area.

Iarnrod Eireann explained to the Herald: "Hansfield will not be opened in September, as the developer has not provided the access road to the station."

Barry Kenny, of Irish Rail, went on to say that they were "working with Fingal County Council in seeking to ensure that the developer completes these works as soon as possible", but that they did not have a timescale.

"When it does open it will be extremely beneficial to the people from the local area and we're discussing the possible construction of a large car park with Fingal County Council.

"We had everything in place for the access road to be built and the developers were contractually obligated to have the road completed in line with the opening of the rail line," said Mr Kenny.

John Lynch, chairman of CIE, echoed the sentiments, saying: "We are seeking to ensure that the developer completes these works as soon as possible."

Labour finance spokespeerson Joan Burton went on to say that ordinary Irish people were once again being held to ransom by property developers.

She said that it was "deeply disappointing for local people that when much needed infrastructure is finally provided, it can't be used because a property developer isn't living up to his end of the deal.

"Yet again, local people are at the mercy of property developers for the provision of basic services.



Understatement

"We have a brand new train station at the Phoenix Park that is hardly used, and a brand new station at Hansfield that can't open because it has no access road.

"To say that this shows a lack of joined-up thinking would be an understatement.

"Even if only a temporary access road is put in place at first, the local community cannot afford to have expensive, much-needed infrastructure lying idle."

Ms Burton went on to say that she had written to Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey urging him to fast-track the opening of Hansfield station.

hnews@herald.ie